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Come Along With Me

September 16, 2013 Leave a comment
We are all on a journey, sometimes our experience and what see differs.

We are all on a journey, sometimes our experience and what see differs.

It’s interesting the reactions you can get from people when you speak your mind.

My post “The Journey Continues” was my first post in quite some time and I think it took some of guard, I’m afraid I may have even offended some. Which for those who know me personally, they would know I’m not one to be afraid of shocking or offending people. But for those reading this, that read my last post, please know that I’m not trying to shock people or make people angry. It’s really not the purpose of this. This is my way of venting, and “airing the laundry” so to speak. It’s a way of getting stuff of my chest. Although I wear my feelings and emotions on my sleeve and am pretty much an open book, there are some things that I just can articulate in person or out loud.

One of my readers asked me if he could post/share my post on a blog site called Internet Monk; something that I had to give some serious thought to. Until now, I’ve kept this blog somewhat private and only open to a select group of Facebook friends who I thought could share their thoughts and with whom I felt comfortable sharing my thoughts. I agreed to it and my post went up Friday morning. It’s been interesting see the comments from random strangers as they read my blog and encouraged, shared advice, thanked me for my “courage” and even prayed for me. I plan on going back through everything that was said and taking time to really “meditate” on some of the things that were said.

I know that there is no one on this earth that has the answers to all my questions and that I have to work this out. But if you’re reading this blog and/or I’ve shared this with you, you’re a part of my journey. Your experiences on your journey may be vastly different than mine, but that doesn’t mean that we can’t help one another along the way. You have no idea how much I appreciate your words of encouragement and even your “tough” words. I give it thought and I really do try to take it heart.

Carpe Diem

April 11, 2011 4 comments

Journey OnI’ve begun to make some changes in my life. Seeking God and really learning to trust Him in all things. I’m learning that this is some much easier said than done. It’s not easy to really give things over to God and to trust that He’s going to see you through. When you read the word of God it all seems so easy, I mean, Jesus in the flesh came up to these men and said “Follow me.” How hard could that be, after all, he was the son of God. But, when the disciples left their jobs and their livings to follow Jesus, they didn’t have the whole story, the Bible wasn’t written and they didn’t know where and how things were going to end up. I wonder what their parents, friends and family thought? It took a step of faith. When Peter stepped out of the boat, I’m sure it didn’t make sense to the rest of the men in the boat.

I suppose part of stepping out in faith is to not look towards man and to be concerned about what others say and think but to keep your eyes of God and know that you are doing what He has called you to. I think that is part of my “fear” right now, knowing that the decisions I make moving forward are really God and Spirit led. I’m new to this, I’ve always been able to do the “will of God” for my life with a safety net and just “walk through the open doors” and trust that those that closed, closed for a reason.

At times I wonder why God allows some of us to go through times of testing and yet others seem to coast through it all. It doesn’t seem fair, but as I think more about it, it’s during times of trials and tribulations that you really get to know who you are but also that will test a friendship and relationship. As difficult as this time may be in the end, I have to trust that God is directing my steps and making my path known.

I know that one day I will look back on this time in my life and it will all make sense. It may not be easy now and I may not know how things are going to end, but the even though I don’t know how things will work out, I know that God will see me through.

I Refuse

March 28, 2011 1 comment

Cypress Hills Valley

If you’ve been following my blog on a regular basis you can see that God is doing a work in me. He is challenging me and calling me to rise up to be the man of God that He created and designed me to be. I remember a number of years ago I said I wasn’t going to hide my struggles and pretend that everything was all okay inside when it wasn’t. I was going to be real. And, I’m still that person, and I know that some people will accept that side of me and others will not. At least with a blog and posting this way I don’t have to face the rejection head on and I don’t have to feel the loss of those that can’t accept me for who I am.

In the last two days I’ve sat heard three messages from three different people. Each message did however tie into the other and spoke to things that God has been putting on my heart for the last week or so. I guess a lot of what has been stirring in my heart started with an album I heard for the first time just over a week ago. The album is “See You” by  Josh Wilson. There are a number of songs that ministered to me on the album but I’m going to focus on one called, “I Refuse”. We as Christians know that we all have a calling on our lives. Yes, your calling is not mine, but you have a calling none the less and only you can do what God has called you do. I think that for some time now I’ve been sitting on the sidelines and that I’ve taken myself out of the game. Well, not anymore I refuse to sit there and not move – I’m back in the game. I’m not going to let my injuries and aches and pains hold me back from what God has called me to. There is a generation out there that is lost and that God has called me to.

As I’ve said before I’m a perfectionist in a lot of ways and if I’m going to do something I want to do it right. And, I like most of us I struggle with sin; I repent and ask God to forgive me. I live a good walk for a time and then I fall and I beat myself up and pull myself out of the game. But I learned that I can be a sinner who struggles to be a lover of God, or I can be a lover of God who sometimes struggles with sin. The difference is in the mindset, one is defeated and the other victorious. Jesus paid the price for not just our salvation on the cross but to overcome the strongholds and the sins in our lives. Hold on to this as you continue to read.

There are two types of sin, sin against others, lying, cheating, murder, and, then there is sin against the body, sexual immorality. (1 Corinthians 6:18) I know that for myself sexual immorality has been a constant struggle as far back as I can remember. And, it is probably the one sin that I’ve tried to keep “hidden” from people. It’s not something that people want to talk about or hear. But I can’t hide my heart from God. He sees my heart and He knows the sins that I commit in my heart.

Why am I sharing this, let alone blogging about it for the world to see? Well because I want to live in freedom. I want to shed a light on the darkness in my life so that it can be exposed and I can be delivered from it. And because I think there are others out there that probably should hear this as well.

Tonight I heard a passage of scripture that I’d heard before but it never spoke to me as real as it did tonight.

“Do not be deceived: Neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor men who have sex with men, nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor slanderers, nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God. 1 Corinthians 6:9-10”

God says that the sexually immoral, among others, will not inherit the kingdom of God. Think about that, it doesn’t leave much room for debate there. Our society has become so filled with sexual perversion that most of us are immune to it. We see sex on TV, in magazines and in movies so much that we don’t even think anything about it. Yet, we are committing adultery and not even thinking twice about it. (Matthew 5:28) As a church body we need to bring ourselves out of this type of bondage so that we can be free in Christ-Jesus!

God doesn’t want us trapped and enslaved to sin, He sent Jesus to die on the cross so we can be free. If we don’t take a stand now in our generation what is the message that the generation to follow going to do? We’ve become so complacent in things that we aren’t bringing up the next generation to have a healthy fear of the Lord. We need to get back to a place where we are in true relationship with God and where we are living lives that are pure and worthy of Him.

Yes, I know that I may stumble and I may fall but I’m going to choose to be a lover of God who is victorious and I’m going to pick myself back up and continue after Him! There is a generation of souls out there that need to discover true freedom!

Christian or Hypocrite?

March 1, 2011 8 comments

I started writing parts of this post a while back and put it aside and wasn’t really sure if I was going to post it or not. But the other day I was out with some friends and we were talking about Church, Christianity and the world as a whole. It’s really quite interesting what kind of conversations you have with a diverse group of people at a table, church going Christians, agnostics and “backslidden Christians”.

During the course of the evening we started talking about God and the church. I mentioned that I haven’t called myself a Christian in a number of years because I wasn’t living a life that in my eyes, and in the eyes of many I’m sure, would measure up to what a Christian should be. For a number of years I had been one of those who went to church on Sunday but led a life that wasn’t much different from non-Christian’s life. To me calling myself a Christian seems all just a bit hypocritical and especially in the last year or so as I haven’t been going to church at all.

This has got me thinking, “what separates Christians from non-Christians in this generation?”  It seems that in today’s generation we have become a lot more tolerant of things that use to be considered wrong and even sinful. We look at some of these behaviours and justify them to ourselves and reason why they aren’t wrong anymore. I’m not trying to get all preachy and try to bring conviction on people, but really where and how does today’s generation of Christians stand out. I know not all of my generation, and the generation below me, live this lifestyle but it seems as though the number of them that do is greater than it used to be.

As a kid growing up I learned the Sunday school song “This Little Light of Mine” and I’m sure many of you learned it as well. There are a few different passages of scripture that this song’s origins may have come from, but they all say the same thing, let your light shine so that the world can see the light of God in you. I think that for far too long many of us have hidden our lights under a bushel in order to fit in. I’m just as guilty as the next person on this one. But the truth the Bible tells us that we even though we are in the world we shouldn’t be part of the world. The reality of it is; it’s just way easier to hide in the dark than to be a city on hill.

It’s funny, when I start a post I try to have some idea as to what I’m going to say and how I want to lay things out. But this one is different. I know I said earlier that I’m not going to get preachy and all that and really that’s not who I am. But I need to hear this as much as others to do and so I’m just typing what I feel needs to be said. Our generation, both the churched and un-churched, is lost and is looking for truth and is looking for something real to hold onto. And, unfortunately the errors, sins and indiscretions of the church have caused many of our generation to turn away from God and from truth.  Well the simple truth of the matter is that, while we sit there and allow our lights to be hidden under a bushel and we justify why the things we are doing aren’t “really” sinful or wrong, our generation is dying and going to hell. At least that’s what we believe as Christians, right? No man can enter the Kingdom of Heaven but through Jesus Christ. How is our generation going to hear if we don’t tell them? How is our generation going to believe that there is more to God unless we walk-the-walk and talk-the-talk? Yes, we need to be real with them. Yes, we need to reach them where they are at. Yes, we need to go where they are. But we also need to stand apart from them.

Yes, Jesus spent his time with the outcasts of society. He spent time with the prostitutes, the lepers and in the areas that the religious of the time wouldn’t go, but he didn’t partake. He went there with love and compassion and showed them the way, but was set apart from them. We need to set ourselves apart from the non-Christians so that we can show them light and bring them into fellowship and communion with the God who made them and loves them.

So, if you are still with me on this one, I’m not going to say sorry for my ‘rant’. I wrote it for a reason. I needed to hear, and I need make a change. But I’m not the only one that needs to hear this and make and change. I know it’s not going to be easy, and I may not succeed all the time, but I’m on a journey and it’s been a tough one with a lot of ups and downs, but I’m going to keep going until my journey ends.

Ask yourself, what separates you from a non-Christian? And, is the light of God shining as brightly in you as is could and should be?

Wandering The Desert

February 11, 2011 3 comments

It’s been a while since I’ve blogged, this isn’t a bad thing but it’s not necessarily a good thing either. I’ve found that spending time blogging helps me reflect on God and my spirituality. Being that I’m currently unemployed I have a lot more time on my hands than I did when I was working full time. But it has also been a very humbling time and quite difficult at times. I’ve always relied on God to guide me steps and to open and close the doors as needed, the only difference that in the past I didn’t have a family to support and all the bills that come along with growing up. I’ve been going over a number of different options; do I look for work in my current field, do start all over and go back to school and do something that I’m interested in and completely different, and then all of the options and things that need to be worked out with going back to school.

I’m really in a place where I really have to rely on God and trust and pray that the right doors will open and close. But that’s not always easy is it? It’s never easy when the doors open and open and then close. In fact I find it quite frustrating and sometimes it really gets me down. I believe that God allows things to happen for a reason and that eventually all things will be made clear but I tell you that losing your job twice in one year, going to a number of interviews and not having them work out can be a real shot to the ego and pride.

I wonder if God has me in this place right now so that I can spend some time getting to rely on Him again and to build up my spiritual man. I remember years ago wishing that I could take a sabbatical to focus on God and get deeper into Him. The only difference between now and then is that I was “plugged” into a church and was in a seemingly better place spiritually then than I am now.

I am trusting all things are going to work out, yes, I know what Romans 8:28 says. But right I know I’m honestly wish/wanting God to just say “Eric, this is what I want you to do. This is how I’m going to do it. And this is how it is all going to work out.” But then how would that build up my faith right?

Have you ever been a place where you aren’t sure what lies ahead for you and you just want it all to come together so you can get going? What have you done to get through that time of transition? How have you known that what you were doing was really what God wanted for you?

Sin, What’s Your Label?

January 22, 2011 5 comments

Westminster AbeyWhat is sin?

Here’s what dictionary.com says:

Noun

1. transgression of divine law: the sin of Adam.

2. any act regarded as such a transgression, esp. a willful or deliberate violation of some religious or moral principle.

3. any reprehensible or regrettable action, behavior, lapse, etc.; great fault or offense: It’s a sin to waste time.

According to the bible sin is what separates us from God. And as the first definition states it all originated from Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden. In the eyes of God all sin is equal and “all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 2:23). I’m sure that I’m not stating anything new here or anything that any Christian would disagree with.

On my journey, I’ve had many debates with people about sin and the church. I’ve found people who are willing to “blur” the lines on things in order to make life “simpler” for them, yet draw a hard-line on other things. I’ve also talked with people who draw a hard-line on certain sins and make no exceptions about people who struggle with these sins, yet make acceptions for other sins that they see as more tolerable or acceptable. I’m no different I’m sure and by no means am I trying point out the spec in my brother or sister’s eye, I’m simply trying to make a point, and that is that sin is sin in the eyes of God. There are no bigger or lesser sins, they all separate us from God. I truly believe that if we as Christians can accept this and try to live by this principle we can make a greater impact in this world. If we just accepted all people for who they are, children of God separated from Him by sin, maybe, just maybe, we could reach out to people who for the most part feel judged and shamed by the church and God.

Imagine if we looked at the alcoholic, the homosexual, the murderer, the prostitute, the rapist the same way we looked at the person who lies or cheats. I mean I know that I’ve lied and cheated at one point or another in my life. I’m just as sinful as they are. Imagine if we just accepted them for who they are, no strings attached, no saying “we love you, but we hate your sin.” We just accepted them. Loved them. And treated them the way that we treated our fellow brother and sister in the Lord. What kind of impact could we have? Jesus reached out to those who were the outcasts. Shouldn’t the church of today as well? In the same way that they say you can catch more flies with honey than with vinegar we can reach more people with love and acceptance than we can by say your sin is unacceptable.

I’m not saying that we ignore the sin, but lets not make it the main focus of who people are. Last time I was in church there was no one there wearing labels identifying them by their sins. We are all God’s children saved by grace.